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The 2011 Innovation Awards, which recognize the achievements of companies breaking new ground with Red Hat and JBoss solutions, are now underway. As a judge for the fifth consecutive year, I am always eager to discover the innovative ways our customers and partners are utilizing Red Hat and JBoss technologies to confront today’s challenging business issues. Major paradigm shifts are occurring as companies increasingly examine efficiencies enabled by new cloud and virtualized architectures. It’s exciting to see what companies are doing to leap ahead of conventional IT infrastructure.

Reviewing these stories from our customers and partners leveraging the full advantage of the open source development model to overcome challenges and create value continues to impress me. Your success is important, and I encourage you to share your story by submitting a nomination for the 2011 Innovation Awards. Nominations will remain open until March 11, 2011. Winners will be recognized at the Red Hat Summit and JBoss World taking place May 3-6, 2011 in Boston, MA.

Given the economic climate over the past few years, it has become vital for CIOs to become laser-focused on keeping their IT spending in check, while at the same time, deliver the necessary technology to become and remain a high-performing organization. Over the years, I have been fortunate enough to review award-winning submissions from organizations that are doing just that, including leading enterprises such as Hill Air Force Base, Comcast, Citigroup, Travel Channel, Nationwide and Whole Foods, just to name a few. Each year, I am always impressed to see the performance and ROI improvements highlighted in submissions by organizations in numerous industries around the world.

For example, 2010 Innovation Award winner Travel Channel was recognized for its implementation of JBoss Enterprise Application Platform and JBoss Operations Network. Utilizing open source solutions, Travel Channel enhanced risk management and capacity planning, increased throughput and and increased application availability. Read the full submission. In addition, 2009 Innovation Award winner Whole Foods Market was recognized for its use of Red Hat Satellite to manage its Red Hat Enterprise Linux systems that resulted in reduced costs, reallocated resources and an opportunity for the Whole Foods IT department to focus more on strategic business initiatives. Read the full submission.

Lastly, the Innovation Awards are open to all Red Hat and JBoss customers and partners worldwide. I am looking forward to reviewing your submission, and good luck!

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